A Few Frugal Things

Here are a few frugal things I have been up to lately (and an adorable picture of our dogs just for good measure!)

1) Today I went to Target and Fred Meyer for some groceries as well as a couple of house hold necessities (Nature’s Miracle people, look it up if you have pets) and I didn’t buy a single Halloween decoration. If you know me, you know this is a big deal. I love all things Halloween, and even more so, I just love all things skeleton related. Basically, Halloween decorations are my favorite thing ever, I decorate my house with them year round, so for me to walk out of both stores empty handed was a major victory!

2) It has been brisk the past week or so in Portland, which is a welcome change from the incredible heat we experienced all summer. It was a hot one. Too hot. We’re over it. But I digress…..The cooler weather means I have been craving soup, all the soup. So at least once a week I have been making a pot of soup with whatever I have on hand, and freezing it in mason jars. Each mason jar is one meal so it’s a perfect, self contained meal. I fill the jars about half an inch below the rim and freeze with the lid off, securing them when the jars are safely frozen. So tonight I added two more jars to the freezer, and I ate the remaining cup or so for dinner. Delicious and will provide me with dinners for a few evenings in the future when I don’t feel like cooking.

2 1/2) Speaking of cooler weather, we used out A/C this summer, a lot. It was so miserably hot and our bedrooms are on the third floor. So from July to late August, we practically ran the air 24/7. But about a week ago the weather took a chilly turn. It has been down in the 40’s or 50’s over night and barely hitting 60 during the day. This means we have had all our windows open, letting the house air out. We bundle up in sweaters if the house gets chilly, but we are not turning on the heat. It has been such a lovely change of pace! Not only are we saving money, we are actually enjoying the cool weather, best of all the smell of rain! (We get a ton of rain in the Pacific Northwest, and we relish the smell of rain!)

3) I worked from home. This is frugal for a couple of reasons. One being I’m making money, obviously a good thing. And two, if I’m home I am less likely to stop for food. See, if I’m working from the office it’s so easy to think “oh I’ll just go grab tacos for lunch” or “an ice cream cone sounds perfect right now”. However, if I’m home, I am way less likely to make a trip out just for food. I will make something at home. See, I have dogs, three of them. The process of getting them out to potty, in their kennels, provide entertainment, and leave them is a bit of effort. Then they will bark, at last for a few minutes, which has potential to annoy my neighbors. So I will almost always just stay in with them and make something to eat from the fridge or pantry.

4) I unsubscribed to a bunch of promotional emails. As so many people do, I sign up for ALL the emails. I buy shoes, I sign up for their emails. I order dog food, I sign up for the emails. And so on. So today I did an over haul of my inbox. I went through the past three weeks worth of emails and un-subsubscribed to all the promotional emails. Hopefully this will lead to less temptation to look at the pretty things, and buy all the pretty things.

5) I walked my dogs. A lot. As mentioned, my roommate and I have three dogs. One of our dogs in a foster (who will be staying forever) but right now he is evidence in a court case. Because of his background, he is intact (not neutered) and was never house trained until he came to live with us. Or I should say, we are still in the process of house training. This means a lot of walks. Like, all the time. Why is this frugal? Because I used to shell out thirty bucks a month to go to a gym to walk on a treadmill for thirty minutes at a time. Now, I walk my dog at least 6 times a day for 15 minutes or so per walk. It adds up. And that’s only one dog! The other two get regular walks, but not quite as many as they are in fact house trained. Since bringing my foster pup home, I cancelled my gym membership because I get plenty of walking time with my boys!

These were all relatively small steps, but every little bit counts right? My bank account certainly appreciates each and every little frugal step I take. What about you, what frugal steps did you take today?